Welcome to “The Fancy Fork!” Your hub for seasonal produce insight and farm-style recipes that are made to satisfy.
The featured seasonal produce for November is sweet pears, with the most beloved being the pale green Bartlett pear and the vibrantly red Anjou pears. You may notice that you rarely get an upset stomach when eating pears and that’s because they have low acid levels, making them very gentle on sensitive digestive systems. In fact, with an extensive history dating back to about 1000 B.C., did you know the ancient Greeks used sweet pears as a remedy against nausea? Originally noted as “butter fruit” for their appealing soft and butter-like texture.
However, the real question is, how are sweet pears beneficial for your health? These bell-shaped delicacies not only make beautifully delicious tarts but are also highly nutritious. With an average of 100 calories each, they are a rich source of potassium, copper, fiber, and Vitamin C. Providing both soluble and insoluble fiber, pears help promote healthy gut bacteria to get your digestive tract smooth-flowing. With immense antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, they’ve been linked to reducing the risk of certain illnesses, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Sausage & Thyme Chicken Roast with Pears
- 2 chicken breasts, about 1 lb. to 1½ lbs.
- 2 Italian pork sausages or cajun andouille sausages
- 4 figs, quartered
- 2 pears, quartered
- 1 Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp. dried Italian herb seasoning
- ½ tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- Preheat oven to 450F. Line a 9 x 13″ baking dish with parchment paper.
- In the prepared pan, add the chicken breasts and sausages in a single layer. Surround the meat with the sliced pears and figs, trying to keep all ingredients to a single layer.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup and extra virgin olive oil. Generously brush the mixture onto each chicken breast, then lightly drizzle the remaining maple syrup mixture over the sliced winter fruits.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the salt, black pepper, and dried Italian herb seasoning. Evenly pat each chicken breast with half of the seasoning mix.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until chicken is fully cooked, at 165F.
- Remove from the oven, then loosely tent the baking dish with aluminum foil for 8-10 minutes.
- For serving: After the cooling period, slice the chicken breasts and sausages. Transfer all the ingredients to a serving plate, then garnish with the fresh thyme leaves. Serve immediately.
Now that you’ve mastered the art of cooking with seasonal pears, it’s time to grab your fork and enjoy the warmth of Autumn season delights!